CHEERS - To game over. A ground-breaking initiative aims to stop more than 33,000 New York state registered sex offenders from playing online video games on more than 3,500 gaming accounts. "Operation: Game Over" is a cooperative endeavor with support from Microsoft and Apple, among others. Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman is spearheading this newest effort to protect children from online predators. The law requires convicted sex offenders to register all of their email addresses and screen names with the state. Schneiderman's statement sums up our cheer: "We must ensure online video game systems do not become a digital playground for dangerous predators. That means doing everything possible to block sex offenders from using gaming networks as a vehicle to prey on underage victims."
JEERS - To spending money on reality-government TV. Some Montgomery County supervisors would like to see board meetings broadcast on public-access television. A resolution will be considered April 23. We support giving people greater access to government, but we question whether the county should spend money for public-access broadcasts that may not be available to all residents. We also wonder what meetings would be televised. Most work is done in committees, where pros and cons are discussed before the recommendation to the full board. If the main meeting is televised, so should the committee meetings. Residents who want to be informed should attend meetings and contact representatives for answers. People should read newspapers and listen to local news broadcasts. The estimated cost to record meetings for the public-access broadcasts - $1,000 to $3,000 - may be small, but is the effort necessary?
CHEERS - To Matthew Tambasco. Matthew has joined the list of outstanding Eagle Scouts in our area. As a member of Troop 104, this Tribes Hill resident led a crew of 20 family and friends to dismantle the existing adventure play set at Mountain Valley Hospice and replace it with a larger one along with a bench and granite marker. Congratulations, Eagle Scout Matthew Tambasco.
CHEERS - To a premier event. Five athletes will be recognized at the inaugural Fulton County Baseball & Sports Hall of Fame event on May 5. Deserving recipients will be champion skier "Jumpin'" Jack Johnston, NFL great Dave Smukler and Gloversville Glovers Robert Sise, John Coakley and Jack McKeon. This event is not just for sports fans; it's a great opportunity to instill in young people the importance of individuals in local sports history. The master of ceremonies will be sports broadcaster Joe Calderone. The keynote speaker will be McKeon, who managed several major league teams in his career. In 2003, he won a World Series with the Florida Marlins, and years later came out of retirement at age 80 to manage the Marlins again in 2011. For more information about the Hall of Fame event, visit www.fchof.com.